Green Beaver, a company that produces natural cosmetics and skin care products, approached La Cité’s Technology Access Centre in Bio-Innovation to assist in their plan to develop an eco-certified antioxidant cream. Eco-certification assures that certified products have been produced while respecting the environment.
The first phase of the project began in fall 2017. The team developed a green method for extracting antioxidants contained in brewers’ grains, the insoluble residue from brewed malt (obtained from Beau’s brewery in Vankleek Hill) and found in substandard cranberries which are set aside during harvest (from La Vallée des Canneberges in Venosta). The use of these organic and eco-certified products encourages the bio-conversion of organic waste.
“Bio-conversion and environmental awareness are an intricate part of our society; the opportunity to help develop a product that is both good for us and the environment was incredibly rewarding,” stated Chloé Charlebois, a research assistant at La Cité. “Green Beaver is very involved with this process, and it was a pleasure working with such talented entrepreneurs.”
Three individuals from La Cité; a research associate, a research assistant, and a student in the bachelors in biotechnology, participated in the project. Following their discovery of eco-certified waste containing antioxidants, the team conducted tests and refined two methods for analyzing antioxidants. The optimal conditions for extracting antioxidants from the existing samples were then defined using eco-certified solvents. Both the methods and results obtained were transferred to the company via technological transfer from La Cité’s laboratories.
“Everyone was well organized and competent. The team at La Cité demonstrated professionalism. It was a positive experience for everyone!”, according to Christine Leduc, Director of Research and Development at Green Beaver. “We are currently working together on a follow-up project that consists of testing the lifespan of these extracts and putting together an extraction model in our facility.”
The project was made possible thanks to a financial contribution made by the client and the Ontario Centres of Excellence.